'The Real Madrid fans were with me' - Benzema proud of Champions League performance

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The Real striker scored his first goal in over a month against Napoli on Wednesday, easing the pressure on him from supporters

Karim Benzema says he is proud of his goalscoring performance in Real Madrid's victory over Napoli and feels the club's supporters were fully behind him after enduring a difficult spell.

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Zinedine Zidane's men had fallen behind in their Champions League last-16 tie at Santiago Bernabeu, but Benzema scored the equaliser to ensure the match was level at half-time.

The holders then pushed on to claim a 3-1 victory that puts them in a strong position to reach the last eight, with the striker proud of his impact after a season that has seen his displays heavily criticised by fans.

Benzema has only scored five times in 16 La Liga matches, but his strike on Wednesday was his fifth in just seven Champions league outings.

"It was a great night and all of us put in a great performance," said the striker, who had gone over a month since his last goal. "I'm really proud and happy with my display. I now feel very good after scoring the first goal.

"I felt that the fans were with me and that is really important for your confidence.

"Since a young age, I have lived with criticism. I work hard and sometimes you score a lot of goals and on other occasions you don't. 

"I'm not a striker who always wants to score, I like to do my bit for the team and that is why I work so hard in training. 

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"We know that we are here at Madrid, the best club in the world and the fans always support me. At times, it is to be expected that I come in for criticism, but I'm always here trying to help the team.

"I enjoyed myself. I got my goal and it was a game with a lot of action."

Madrid are back in league action at home to Espanyol on Saturday.